Fletcher in the News

Militants Seize Iraqi Territory: Professor Martel Weighs In

Boston Herald


Ruthless Islamic militants are seizing portions of Iraq by force, hellbent on grabbing territory the United States had freed from Saddam Hussein’s clutches, but it’s unlikely President Obama will put boots on the ground to thwart them, one Middle East expert said. 

“I can’t see that happening unless things really fall apart,” said William Martel, a [Fletcher School] professor of international security studies. “What Iraq is confronting right now is the very strong possibility that the extremists could potentially take over the country. If that happens, the consequences are devastating for us and frankly for the region.”

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria — known as ISIS — has already taken over the Iraqi stronghold of Mosul and has vowed to march to Baghdad. As many as 500,000 refugees are said to be fleeing the region.

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